Sunday, May 13, 2007
Historic Miniature Golf Extravaganza
The Hayes Valley Green has a new temporary public art installation in the form of a miniature golf course.
It's been put together by The Wowhaus, which consists of the husband-and-wife team of Scott and Ene...
...a pair of artists working with handcrafted furniture in public spaces, among other things (check out their beautiful work by clicking here).
They even created exquisite handmade wooden putters which they offer free of charge in exchange for some picture ID.
The nine-hole course is actually situated across the street from the Hayes Green in an abandoned parking lot, partly so they can just lock the gate and not break down the course/display between its bimonthly Saturday afternoon showings/playings.
It's too bad the little art course isn't open daily because judged simply as an inventive miniature golf course, it's a great one, and genuinely delightful to play.
The design of the course is tied into an eccentric version of Hayes Valley history, starting with the sand dunes which were here originally in the first hole and continuing with a nod to the Ohlone Indians on the second hole.
Colonel Thomas Hayes, who built a huge entertainment pavilion where Davies Hall now stands, is featured...
...as is the Greater Gethsemane Church of God in Christ at 240 Page Street.
There is a nod to Eric von Stroheim's silent film masterpiece, "Greed," which was partly shot in the Hayes Valley, and where there will be a free screening on Saturday, September 29, when the miniature course is taken away.
One of the most brilliant holes is #6, dedicated to the buildings that were demolished by the hideous Central Freeway that ran through the Hayes Valley like a poisonous wound from 1959 to 1989.
The masterpiece of the course is a hole #8, inspired by the San Francisco Zen Center at 300 Page Street, where the pamphlet explains: "No hole -- no goal -- please score yourself a 0."
The final hole is a tribute to Patricia Walkup, a neighborhood activist who started the Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association, who along with the San Francisco Arts Commission is sponsoring the "Hayes Valley Historic Miniature Golf Extravaganza." Both organizations should be kindly asked to extend the current hours, which are presently scheduled as 1-5PM on the following Saturdays: May 26, June 9 & 23, July 7 & 21, August 4 & 18, and September 1 & 15. We, The People, want daily miniature golf!